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Giving Tuesday is an annual fundraising initiative – a national day of giving – founded by the 92nd Street Y and the United Nations in 2012. Last year more than 7,000 nonprofits participated in the event raising $19 million. Just like any crowdfunding, though, the amount of money you can raise will very much depend on having a focused plan and sound strategy.

Fortunately, the sector gets better at this every year and people and organizations are generous with their tools, tips, and ideas. Here are a few of the best I’ve seen to date. Even if you don’t participate in Giving Tuesday this year, you’ll find some great ideas for other projects.


Happy planning!

In 1858, the Australian colony of Victoria was young and rich. Neighboring not-so-rich colonies had been launching expeditions of discovery into the "barren void" of the interior for years and the leaders of Victoria wanted in on that action. The Exploration Committee of the Philosophical Institute of Victoria (later the Royal Society of Victoria) began making plans for an expedition in the name of progress and science. If there’s glory to be had, so much the better.

An anonymous donor (later revealed to be Ambrose Kyte) issued a £1,000 challenge grant to support the enterprise on the condition that £2,000 in matching funds be raised from the public within 12 months. A fundraising committee was established forthwith.

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My previous post, Five things I Wish for Nonprofit Websites, received a lot of approval from readers but some people rightly pointed out that getting professional help with your website can be expensive. Well, it doesn’t have to be. If you know where you can take shortcuts and where it’s worth paying a professional, you can get a pretty good site with a minimal investment.


Content Management Systems

Once upon a time web developers would have to code every website page and then upload them directly to the server using an FTP program – not something the average person would want to fool around with. But today’s Content Management Systems (CMS) make it possible for non-technical people to manage their websites without having to know a lick of code. (Large, complex sites with specific requirements may still need custom coding and specialized technical skills to implement but most organizations don’t need to go to that level.)

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